Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business or GMB) is a free tool from Google that allows local businesses to manage their listings across Google Search, Maps, and other platforms.
Google doesn’t share its search volume data. However, according to Hubspot, it’s estimated that Google processes approximately 63,000 search queries every second, translating to 5.6 billion daily searches and about 2 trillion global searches annually. The average person conducts between three and four searches each day. And nearly half of those searches happen within three miles of their home. That means that if you want to reach potential customers, you need to be listed on Google.
With GMB, you can create a professional profile for your business, add photos, write descriptions, and even schedule events. Plus, you can connect with your ideal customers through social media, email, or text messages.
With Google Business Profile, businesses (and nonprofits) can promote their business information on Google Search and Maps.
Google My Business (GMB) is a free tool that helps local businesses get found online. GMB allows you to create a profile, add photos, write your business description, and manage online reviews. The information you enter into GMB is public, so you want to ensure you’re putting out accurate information.
GMB is part of Google’s tools to help local businesses succeed online. If you’ve tried to promote your business on a social media platform or business ads through other channels such as an email marketing campaign, you know that it can be time-consuming and expensive.
With GMB, you can easily update your listing on a regular basis whenever you change something about your business. This means you don’t have to worry about forgetting to post new details. In addition, you can see how much traffic each page receives so you can adjust your marketing strategy accordingly.
Creating or claiming your Google Business Profile is similar to having a business listing in an online directory but with more benefits, e.g. search engine optimization. Companies with a limited budget and can’t afford Google Ads (formerly Google Adwords) etc., use GMB to boost their organic search engine ranking to reach prospective customers. It’s excellent with regular quality content such as blog posts, guest blogging posts, etc., and active users who have websites can gauge their performance with Google Analytics.
7 Ways to Promote Your Local Business with Google My Business
The following are seven ways or steps to promote your local business using Google My Business.
– Set Up Your Profile
According to Google, creating a profile can be accomplished in two different ways:
Add Your Business Through Google Maps
- On your computer or mobile device, sign in to Google Maps.
- You can add your business in 3 ways:
- Enter your address in the search bar. On the left, in the Business Profile, click Add your business.
- Right-click anywhere on the map. Then, click Add your business.
- In the top left, click Menu and add your business.
- Follow the on-screen instructions to finish signing up for your Business Profile.
Claim Your Business Through Google Maps
- On your computer or mobile device, open Google Maps.
- In the search bar, enter the business name.
- Click the business name and choose the correct one.
- Click Claim this business and then Manage now.
- To choose a different business, click I own or manage another business.
- Select a verification option, and follow the on-screen steps.
Like social networks, keeping your business information up-to-date and accurate is necessary. If you have changed your address or hours of operation, update your GMB page. Ensure that you use the correct phone number, email address, website, etc.
When searching for local businesses, people type in keywords. Optimising keywords ensures your business is in front of as many of these searches as possible.
– List Your Hours of Operation
You may temporarily change your operating hours for various reasons, such as public holidays or staff illness. If you have a “special” hour, you owe it to your customers to let them know. Sadly, lots of businesses fail to update their business hour. So please keep your operating hours updated here and on any other relevant social platform or social post.
– Update Your Address and Phone Numbers
When setting up your business profile on GMB, if your business name populates in the drop-down with an address, your Business Profile already exists! If your business name does not show an address, select it and fill out the required information.I assume you already have a functional website, right? We've written several articles on the needs and benefits of having a website for your business. Click To Tweet
You might be asked to position a pin on a map to confirm the location. It’s essential that the address you give is accurate and complete to prevent any confusion to your existing or potential customers or issues with the verification process.
You must choose a verification method to prove that the business is located at the specified address. It is common to receive a postcard at the business address, but you can also verify by phone or email.
While GBP is being verified, you can continue to edit and update it, but it will not be visible on Google. You cannot use a post office box or mailbox in a storefront. Note that you can also only have one business per residence. Also, note that Google Business Profile tracks phone calls and website clicks, so make sure your information is correct here.
Through your GMB profile, people can easily find your business and get directions to it. Once your profile has a valid address, users can easily see your location from Google Maps and get directions. You can select this option if you are eligible for phone verification, which will call your phone number and give you your verification code.
So you need to ensure your address and phone numbers are correct. So it’s a good idea to do a thorough check.If your business location is relevant to your search engine marketing, you need to look into having a Google Business Profile if you don't have one already. Click To Tweet
– Upload Photos of Your Location
Photos help searchers visualise your business and get a sense of the brand. Customers can add their photographs to listings, and some will choose to do so when they leave you a Google review.
It’s good to have a mix of your photos and those of users on your listing since you will not be able to control the order in which they appear.
Be sure to showcase different aspects of your products and services and areas of your physical location.
Incorporating visual aids into your business will stand out more and seem more legitimate to customers. You can add photographs of your business’s exterior or employee group shots.
Use high-quality images to make your listing stand out from the competition. Be careful not to use copyrighted material without permission.
You can post photos to your profile to show what makes your business unique and give customers reasons to choose you every time. It’s a good way for your business to stay in contact with customers.
– Create a Map
Your business profile likely already exists, even if you didn’t create it. A Business Profile is a place on Google Maps that anyone can add. But if it does not already exist, you need to add it to create it on Google Maps. Users can also access your physical address directly from Google Maps with one click once you claim your spot on Google Maps.
– Link Your Website
Don’t forget to link your profile to your website to drive website visits. I assume you already have a functional website, right? We’ve written several articles on the needs and benefits of having a website for your business. Having a website is essential to growing your business online.
– Claim Reviews and Ratings
You cannot respond to Google reviews, an essential part of your business profile, without a GMB. With customer reviews being a Google search ranking factor and the number one influence on consumer buying, managing them is crucial. You can reach out to customers by phone, messaging, or responding to reviews. Ensure you respond to reviews you receive, especially the negative reviews. Reacting to a negative review can make or break your online reputation.
In conclusion, Google Business Profile, aka Google My Business, is a free tool that allows you to manage your local business listings across Google Search, Maps, YouTube, and other platforms. It is a great tool to promote your local business, especially for a retail business. It’s also great as an additional support option for your online marketing. You can also use it to keep track of relevant customer calls or valuable customer feedback about your business.
So if your business location is relevant to your search engine marketing, you need to look into having a Google Business Profile if you don’t have one already.
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